Sydney stunned over Harbour fireworks as NSW burns
SYDNEYSIDERS have lashed out at authorities following a 'senseless' fireworks display in Sydney Harbour at the same time the state battles one of its worst bushfire conditions on record.
People were left outraged on Wednesday night when the 20-minute fireworks display was staged east of the Opera House.
A total fire ban remains in place due to the bushfire crisis, with at least five people fined yesterday for flouting the restrictions.
NSW remains in a state of emergency and 1000 firefighters continue to work tirelessly to keep at least 69 fires under control in the state's north, 14 of which are burning at watch and act level.
Bushfires have devastated regional communities, destroying more than 300 homes and taking three lives since the season began.
People took to social media last night to slam the use of fireworks in Sydney.
Some described the display as a "joke," "tone deaf" and "senseless," while others argued the money should instead be used to fund fire crews.
Pathetic! The state is currently in a total fire ban, people loosing their homes and life’s and yet somehow Sydney is still allowed fireworks!— Mark Smith (@marko_smith90) November 13, 2019
One of the best fireworks displays of the year. 👏👏👏 pic.twitter.com/8GtkXJeIKe— Sydney Fireworks (@FireworksSydney) November 13, 2019
"One of my students told me his house almost burnt down yesterday. Now there's fireworks exploding everywhere in Sydney. Seems a little insensitive, sending sparks everywhere at a time like this," one Twitter user said.
Others claim to have contacted Premier Gladys Berejiklian asking her to justify the display.
"How are fireworks allowed in Sydney on a day of total fire ban? Seems somewhat hypocritical given the tough stance that has been taken against individuals," one social media user asked.
"Definitely should have given this display a miss, shockingly bad taste tonight after the last few days and with so many fires still burning," said another.
wondering why @cityofsydney had fireworks displayed tonight when they could donate the $20-$40k used to pay for that to fighting bush fires and saving the koalas... also there is a STATE FIRE BAN??????? What a JOKE????@ScottMorrisonMP @7NewsSydney @smh #NSWfires #sydney— Rachelrara (@_rachelrara) November 13, 2019
The City of Sydney has responded to the furore, saying all fireworks other than the NYE and Lunar Festival fireworks are arranged by SafeWork and not the council.
"We are notified, only when required, that a fireworks display is planned," the council said in a statement.